happy summerHaving the best summer is more than a schedule chock full of outdoor activities. It’s staying healthy and fit, too. Here are some tips to help you maximize summer fun:

Tip #1. Keep hydrated. Plan on drinking fluids at least one hour before you head out for the day. Aim for 10 eight ounce glasses per day to keep the kidneys functioning properly and flush toxins from the body. Add some variety to your water by infusing it with fresh fruit — delicious, nutritious and hydrating!

Tip #2: Enjoy the great outdoors. Whether you are venturing out for a beach-filled day on the sandy south shore or scenic north shore, to the golf course or other outside venues, be sure to lather up with sunscreen free of PABA, OMC, 4-MBC, Benzophene-3 or Homosalate which have been linked to an increased risk for skin cancer. Hats are also helpful. If, despite your best efforts you manage to burn, try aloe vera for natural soothing sunburn relief. While too much sun exposure can be harmful, 15-20 minutes a day can help boost your Vitamin D levels which help boost your mood, immunity and energy levels.

Tip #3: Fend off mosquitoes naturally. Essential oils are natural deterrents for pesky biting insects and are free of harmful chemicals like DEET. (Check out doTerra’s Terra Shield essential oil.) Adding mosquito-repelling plants around your house can also help keep annoying pests at bay.

Tip #4: Add daily exercise to your summer routine. This winter’s cold, icy weather was a valid reason for not getting out as much for outdoor activities. Now that summer is here, there is no excuse! Hiking, biking, running and walking are all great ways to boost energy and fitness levels. Check out the Long Island Greenbelt Trail for ideas. Gardening can be a great workout, too!

Tip # 5: Show your feet some love: Did you know that wearing shoes with little or no foot support can cause the knees to turn in, misalignments of the pelvis and poor posture? Tendons and muscles in your feet, hips, ankles, knees, and back can also become overused without proper support. Reduce the toll on your body – skip the flip flops this summer, or purchase a pair with a firm arch, a thick sole and good traction.

Tip #6: Support our local farmers and your health too! Farmers markets are open and bustling. Treat your family and yourself to fresh organic fruits, veggies, honey and herbs. Farmers markets often offer an amazing array of produce that are not typically available in your local supermarket.  Check out this directory for a market nearest you.

Tip #7. Stick to your regular wellness schedule. There’s no vacation when it comes to your health! Keeping up with your visits helps maintain structural alignment, promoting optimal health and range of motion that helps you to do the summer activities you love. Massage and acupuncture can help soothe sore muscles from summer sports and gardening. Going long stretches without chiropractic care can set you back – which means more extensive care down the road. Don’t be a stranger this summer!